Email marketing is a vital component of many businesses’ wider marketing strategies, and one which can deliver results in the form of valuable conversions. Of course though, for every email that’s actually read, there are many more which are either ignored or immediately deleted. The trick lies in maximising the number that are read, and increasing the overall effectiveness of each individual email.

According to Sign-up.To’s 2014 Email Marketing Benchmark Report, an average of 22.87% of marketing emails were opened in 2013, with click-through rates of 3.26%. While this might not sound a lot, it effectively amounts to around 230 opened emails per 1,000 sent, and around 30 click-throughs which may potentially lead to additional sales. The figures also show slight increases on those of previous years.

So what can you do to maximise A) the number of emails that get opened, and B) the click-through/ conversion rates of those that do get opened?

Drill down to the nitty gritty in your subject headers

The subject header of your email is inevitably the first thing recipients will see, and if it’s not catchy and engaging it’s likely to be the only thing they’ll see. You should approach your subject headers in the same way that you would create the title for a blog or an article – keep it snappy, concise and provoke interest. It’s also important to adhere to the ‘Ronsil’ principle – make sure it does exactly what it says on the tin.

Use only exceptional, professionally written content

Even once they’ve opened your email, recipients may still click away without reading much of it if it doesn’t immediately grab them or if it seems amateurish. Hiring a professional copywriter to produce your email marketing content can ensure that the quality is consistently high and eliminate any costly spelling and grammar errors that may count against you.

Avoid salesmanship, offer value

The last thing people want when they open their inbox is to be bombarded with sales messages that jump down their throat with details of the latest ‘cutting-edge’ product  or discount sale. A softer, more personal approach to email copywriting tends to be more effective, and you should aim to build a good relationship by being genuinely helpful, while subtly promoting your products or services when appropriate.

Make sure your email marketing has a clear-cut purpose and stay ‘on message’

Don’t send out emails just for the sake of it or try to cover too many topics within the same message. If you want results from your email newsletters, have a strong purpose in mind for your message and address this throughout.

Give recipients a compelling reason to click-through

Web users are constantly presented with links to click on during their digital travels, to the extent that they’re quite selective about what they actually do click on. Include a strong call to action in all your emails, and entice them with something concrete, like an insightful whitepaper, a new online brochure, a how-to guide or a current sale.

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